People really don’t get it. Human’s can’t really control who they care for. We may try to by walking away but try as we might, we still care. Imprinting is kind of like that. A wolf finds their soul mate and becomes what the soul mate needs in their life. Isn’t that what we do in true friendship? We become what we need each other to be? It’s not always love at first sight. It’s a bond, an attachment that will never fade regardless of age or mortality.
What people get hung up on is that when imprinting was first presented it was with a couple who were close in age so they assume that it’s like that for every imprint couple. It’s not true. Age differences don’t matter. Romance is not important at all.
What matters is a burgeoning bond between the wolf and their future mate. According to the official guide, Emily refused Sam. She couldn’t stay away from him, nor him from her, but she always told him to go back to Leah. In the time they spent together before she accepted the imprint they were becoming closer. A friendship was growing between them that was so much stronger than the mild acquaintance they’d had before when he was still entirely human. What made Emily fall in love with him was how he was after their fight that scarred her face and arm. His self loathing and concern for her recovery made her see how tied to her he had become.
Kim and Jared were far more of a fairy tale. She’d already had romantic feelings toward Jared long before he ever became a wolf. He comes back to school, sees her in class and imprints. They quickly start a relationship because she knew him before. They’ve grown up together in school and on the reservation.
Paul and Rachel happened because Paul needed someone to mellow him to be his center. She came home from graduating college early. Jacob (who had just returned from being feral) and Billy were all focused on keeping the secret of the wolves from her. To protect her because they loved her and her twin Rebecca enough to keep them out of the world that was so dangerous. Paul imprints and a romance is alluded to by Jacob. A complicated one for sure because though Paul looks like he’s in his 20s he’s the same age as Jacob - 16. Rachel I’m sure had issues with this but from what we can glean from it is that Paul makes her happy, and she provided him with stability for his volatile nature.
Quil and Claire, when they were presented in Eclipse we only get Bella’s side of it. Jacob tells her over and over that she’s not getting it, that it’s not an adult “in love” with a kid. Honestly if that were truly what it was don’t you think bookstores would have refused to sell it? To promote something that is inherently deviant? They could have gotten sued by religious groups if that were truly the case. In BD we see Jacob’s side of it. A far more informative look at what imprinting really means when romance is nonexistent. That was the trouble with the other imprints being represented ahead of this one. We as readers, many who oppose imprinting, see it as a loss of free will and an instant love at first sight. This isn’t always the case as evidence by the divergence of the older imprint pairs. The beach scene in BD with Jake, Quil and Claire is essential to understand what it really means.
It’s a bond, pure and simple. A friendship. An innate protectiveness. If romance develops it will when the time is appropriate and no sooner than what is appropriate for each individual pair. Each one had a different timeline. A different story that all ends up with a strong relationship the only differences is the amount of time it takes for that to present itself.
With Jacob and Renesmee it was most certainly not love at first sight. Honestly if you think that then Jacob would have been killed by Edward and Rosalie the instant it happened. No one would let anyone harm that little girl, emotionally, physically or otherwise. Do you, as Team Edwards, or Team Jacobs or Team Bella’s really think that Edward would have let Jacob live if there was anything but a need to protect Ness? Edward may do some things I may not have agreed with throughout the saga but as soon as he realized he was the father of a innocent, a child who loved its mother that he would have let anyone even think anything ill or depraved towards her? Sure no one likes it. Outwardly it looks weird. Bella for all her observations and faults is a flawed narrator. She doesn’t always perceive what is really going on. It takes her time to see and understand. That’s why she overreacted when she found out. She didn’t understand. You see later at Christmas when Jacob gave Ness the woven bracelet as a promise to protect and be there for her that Bella understood and was banking on that promise to keep her daughter alive if the Volturi started a war.
So yes, I whole heartedly agree with her above short post because I understand what it means and the complexities to the idea of imprinting as a whole. Yeah it’s fiction. But even in something we read for enjoyment, it’s better to understand than to assume.
THIS!!!! ALL OF THIS!!! Agreed!!!! Your words are really perfect!!!